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Abnur Tharn

Author: 
Arctus Cove

Your exalted highness, Euraxia Tharn, Queen of Rimmen

I have been observing your brother—excuse me, half-brother—Abnur Tharn these past few weeks, just as you requested. You did not exaggerate. Everything you said about him is absolutely true.

First, a little history so you know I actually did my due diligence. Your despised half-brother was born in 2E 418, which makes him exceedingly long lived at the ripe old age of 164. Makes me wish I had taken up magic when I was setting out to find my way in the world. Ah, well.

As the aristocratic and overbearing patriarch of the Tharn family and the Imperial Overlord of Nibenay, Abnur has led a storied life. His early years remain something of a mystery, though I assume that much of his first 40 or so years on Nirn were taken up with the usual education and experiences of someone of high noble birth, as well as his training in various arcane arts. We know he excelled at battle magic, but he only really stepped onto the stage of history when he became an advisor to the succession of kings and emperors who attempted to hold the Cyrodilic Empire together in the turbulent decades following the murder of the last Akaviri Potentate. By 2E 465, he was granted the title of Grand Chancellor of the Elder Council, and for the next 117 years, Abnur provided continuity and consistency. He retained that position until the most-recent collapse of the Imperial government. He continues to demonstrate a fierce loyalty to both the Empire and the idea of the Empire, though I expect that stems more from a sense of self-importance than any real love of king and country.

As I’m sure you’re aware, your half-brother has an extensive family, consisting of at least sixteen children, seven wives, and a number of siblings, including your royal majesty. Ever a smarmy dealmaker, he even helped place Varen Aquilarios on the Ruby Throne in exchange for Varen’s agreement to marry his daughter, Clivia. As one of Varen’s most-trusted Five Companions, Abnur joined Lyris Titanborn, Sai Sahan, and Mannimarco in Varen’s quest to recover the lost Amulet of Kings. While I haven’t been able to confirm it, I suspect that Abnur and the Five Companions had a hand in the dreaded Soulburst and the subsequent disappearance of Varen Aquilarios about four years back.

Your half-brother is a wily old wizard and consummate politician. He was the de facto power behind the Ruby Throne for most of the time he served as the head of the Elder Council. His management of your family’s affairs has expanded the wealth and power of the Tharn name by leaps and bounds, though I’m sure you could do better in his stead. He speaks with a natural authority (I would say pompous) and often directs verbal jabs and barbs at those he considers to be his inferior—and that happens to be almost everybody. He believes himself to be the smartest person in the room, and he is often the most ruthless (present company notwithstanding). I admit it: Abnur Tharn isn’t someone I’d ever turn my back on. Not for even an instant.

Abnur Tharn represents the best and worst aspects of an Empire that no longer exists. He is vain, proud, and set in his ways. He thinks he knows best and goes to great lengths to make sure that everyone in his general vicinity completely understands this. He can be relentless and persuasive, alternately cajoling and threatening in equal measure. Beneath his aristocratic polish lies an ever-present undercurrent of menace. He remains a wily old tiger of a man—elegant, subtle, and dangerous. I can see why you have no love for your half-brother. I think the man would drive me to thoughts of murder in very short order. Unfortunately, as good as I am, I have no illusions about being able to stand for long against a battlemage of Abnur’s caliber. Even at his advanced age, he’s only now showing signs of slowing down, and I have no doubt that he remains a force to be reckoned with. However, therein lies the path to getting exactly what your majesty most desires.

Abnur loves having a mystery or problem to solve. Long years of devising strategies and advising emperors on all sorts of topics, I suppose. If you give him something to figure out, he will grab onto it like a dog with a bone and not release it until the situation is resolved. It’s a part of his nature. Provide a tempting mystery, point your half-brother at the problem you need dealt with, and stand back and watch him go. Add to that his burning desire to end the Three Banners War and reunite the Empire, and everything you need falls nicely into place. I have no doubt he will perform exactly as you expect and accomplish precisely what you need him to do.

Of course, if he later determines that you were the one who tricked him, well, please make sure my payment is sent with all due speed.

Arctus Cove, Imperial Spymaster-at-Large

Jorvuld Davaux

Author: 
Chamrond

Headmistress Guillon,

I endorse, and this comes with no hesitation on my part, Jorvuld Davaux's proposed exploration of Scalecaller Peak. While I share your concerns about the hazards of such an expedition, I also can think of no one more suited to uncover the secrets of Zaan the Scalecaller. Davaux is one of the most resourceful and rational academics we have at our disposal. If anyone can accomplish this task, it is him.

I also understand your hesitation in the importance of such a short-lived Dragon Priest, a hesitation shared by many academics throughout history. However, Davaux's observations are correct. It is well documented that Zaan's connection to her dragon Thurvokun was unusually robust, though the nature of this connection has been little speculated upon. To think that this may lead to a better understanding of the connection between Dragon Priests and their Dragon Lords is an exciting prospect, and well worth the funding that Davaux has requested.

For years, Davaux has given his all to this institution, asking little in return. You'll find none more passionate about the mysteries of Dragon Priests, or more hard working to uncover those mysteries. It would be an absolute travesty to deny him funding at this point. Let him go, I say. Let's see what he's truly capable of. I don't believe we'll regret it.

Yours Sincerely,

Professor Chamrond

P.S.

As for your inquiry towards the nature of Davaux's markedly Nordish given name, I believe this part of his family's customs. His mother Torrelda, who I had the great pleasure of working alongside several years ago, often spoke of her strong lineage of Nord scholars. I can only speculate that Davaux is named after Jorvuld the Reserved, a commander known for his rational thinking and defensive tactics; traits that did not make him a particularly popular within the Nord community.

Provost Varuni Arvel

Author: 
Anonymous

AIOS vox-transcript 1066421: Provost Varuni Arvel character evaluation [Session 12]

[begin transcript]

Alienist Arolosea: Greetings, Lector Arvel. Or should I say Provost? Let me be the first to congratulate you on your upcoming promotion!

Varuni Arvel: Thank you! I do have a bit more to do though. Another lecture in the Loqutorium, one cycle in the devotional laboratory, and this evaluation!

Alienist Aralosea: Indeed. No one could accuse you of idleness, that much is certain. Now, to business. Please understand that this is a simple formality. You've proven your dedication to the Clockwork God many times over at this point. But rules are rules, am I right?

Varuni Arvel: That sounds suspiciously like the first question in this evaluation.

Alienist Arolosea: [laughter] Luciana said you were clever. Yes, that is the first question. What are your feelings on rules and regulations?

Varuni Arvel: Well, that's the central paradox of our order, right? Regulations, scholarly dictates, rigid schematics—they form the foundation of the Apostleship. But then, the Tourbillon's sermons tell us to smash the old machines—to reject all laws and restrictions so that our engines can be made clean. So our spirits can grow.

Alienist Arolosea: [inaudible] … seems you favor regulations over disorder.

Varuni Arvel: How is that?

Alienist Arolosea: Your record contains zero citations. No disciplinary notices. No sequential admonitions. Nothing.

Varuni Arvel: With respect, I think that indicates extreme diligence, not a lack of ambition. I've pushed back against scholarly restrictions on several occasions. Just a few cycles ago I conducted a pressure test in the Machine District, despite the travel restrictions.

Alienist Arolosea: But you notified the Proctor before leaving, isn't that correct?

Varuni Arvel: Only to prevent a panic. Luciana is a friend. I would have conducted the test regardless.

Alienist Arolosea: I see. If you don't mind my saying so, I detect some sensitivity on this subject. Does the implication that you favor caution over discovery bother you?

Varuni Arvel: [inaudible]

Alienist Arolosea: Come again?

Varuni Arvel: I think it's a misreading of the facts. I've advanced through the ranks faster than anyone in the history of the city. I've published sixteen dissertations, discovered four heretofore unknown aurbic elements, conducted twelve separate Radial surveys …. You can't accomplish all that without taking risks.

Alienist Arolosea: Then how do you explain this spotless record? Previous provosts received hundreds of disciplinary citations on their path to power.

Varuni Arvel: I guess I'm just better with people.

Alienist Arolosea: By that you mean …?

Varuni Arvel: I try to keep my fellow apostles informed. I value their input. I listen to their advice. Honestly, I think we could all do a much better job of listening to each other. That's something I'd like to change once I receive my promotion.

Alienist Arolosea: Fair enough. It says here that—

[Vox transcript corruption: 12 minutes, 34 seconds lost]

Alienist Arolosea: --see you're very diligent about attending prayer services.

Varuni Arvel: I'm very committed to the faith, yes.

Alienist Arolosea: Care to expand on that?

Varuni Arvel: Lord Seht is my hero. I try to model my life on his example. Attending prayer service brings me closer to him. Helps me focus.

Alienist Arolosea: Interesting. What aspect of Lord Seht's character do you most admire?

Varuni Arvel: [laughter] Where to begin? I admire his wisdom, his architectural prowess, his mastery of virtuous maths …. I could go on, I guess?

Alienist Arolosea: That won't be necessary. Now, what aspects of his character do you most detest?

Varuni Arvel: [long pause] Excuse me?

Alienist Arolosea: What aspects of his character do you find most repellent? What elements of Lord Seht's personality make you uncomfortable?

Varuni Arvel: I don't … [inaudible]

Alienist Arolosea: Does this question make you uncomfortable?

Varuni Arvel: Yes, of course it does.

Alienist Arolosea: Just a moment ago you said you were comfortable with pushing back against regulations and taboos. Should I adjust my notes on that point?

Varuni Arvel: No … no, it's fine. I … [long pause]

Alienist Arolosea: Take your time.

Varuni Arvel: I guess it bothers me that he's never around.

Alienist Arolosea: Go on.

Varuni Arvel: I … I mean, I've been a member of the clockwork apostles for over a century, and I've still never had an opportunity to meet him.

Alienist Arolosea: And that bothers you.

Varuni Arvel: I didn't … I mean, yes, a little. But I would never cite that as a failing on his part. If anything it's my fault for being impatient. He no doubt has important things to do in the Cogitum Centralis. He'll emerge eventually--when he's ready.

Alienist Arolosea: Very well. It appears that our time is up. Thank you for indulging me. We're done!

Varuni Arvel: Good …. Good.

[end transcript]

Proctor Luciana

Author: 
Grimrald Brassbones

Transcribed words of Grimrald Brassbones:

You really want to know how I wound up in here? Locked away in this cell like a broken fabricant? Two words: Proctor Luciana.

She was an obvious mark: a Clockwork Apostle with a whole office and tick-tocks to spare! I refused the job at first. Too dangerous. But the truth is I'm a thrill-seeker at heart. Sometimes it's a virtue. Sometimes it's a vice. This time it was the latter.

The first rule of thieving is to do your research! I spent months in the Archivox, sifting through old records, trying to find out who the Proctor was and where she came from. Lean offerings, let me tell you. I did learn a bit about her life in Tamriel. She was an Imperial Battlemage—one of Reman Cyrodiil's lieutenants. The histories say she burned a whole regiment of snake-men to cinders at the siege of Pale Pass. It earned her the Tsaesci title, “Xhiado Kas." The Flame Maiden. And that's just the start of it!

According to some old factotum logs, she washed up on the city's “shores" millennia ago. She was dead when she arrived—had to be. I've seen the surgical charts. Her body was torn to ribbons! Sotha Sil put her back together again, but left most of her limbs on the operating table. She's a machine now, you understand? She never breathes, or eats, or tires. She just walks the halls and alleys of the city, looking for opportunities to bring down her hammer. I only tell you this so you understand why I didn't stand and fight.

It all happened on a cool night in the Brass Fortress, just after the celestiodrome went dark. After a perilous climb up the side of the Clockwork Basilica, my mates and I stole into the Proctor's room through the ductworks. Dodging Factotum patrols, snatching up nosy skeevatons … everything was going to plan. She was out on patrol, you see? Wouldn't be back for hours. We were in the clear—or so we thought, anyway.

We tossed the place, prying open mnemo-crates and wall alcoves as fast as we could. At last, we found it: one of the Proctor's custom animo cores. Her battery, see? It was a thing of beauty—wrought in heavy brass, covered in copper filigrees, and filled to the brim with geodic energy. We grinned like overstuffed kagoutis and turned to leave. That's when we saw her.

She was standing there in the doorway, clad in her gleaming brass armor; hammer resting heavy on her shoulder. I put my cognitive compressors into overdrive, trying to assemble a credible excuse for being elbow-deep in her property. Just as I opened my mouth to speak, Murbal reached for his dagger.

It all happened so fast. I remember a burst of white-hot light, then Murbal screaming. I looked over at Anton just in time to see his leg crushed by a hammer-blow. I fell to my knees and threw my arms up over my head, waiting for the cold embrace of oblivion—but it never came. Instead, I felt Luciana's cold metal fingers around my throat as she lifted me to my feet. I opened my eyes to see her glaring at me.

“Seems you and I have a lot to talk about," she said. Then she tossed me in here with you lot.

I'm bound for a few years in storage, I know it. But you still have a chance! Keep your gears clean and your chains taut, lads, because she's always watching. Always.

Divayth Fyr

Author: 
Lilatha

Taken from the correspondence of Sojourner Lilatha, sorcerer of the Psijic Order.

Esteemed Ritemaster Iachesis,

I apologize for the lateness of this missive. My wanderings took me far beyond the boundaries of civilization, where the fabric of the Mundus grows thin indeed. I only recently returned to the land of Summerset.

I encountered a fellow traveler on my journeys through the veil, Ritemaster—the Telvanni sorcerer, Divayth Fyr.

I'm sorry to report that his temperament has not improved. When Divayth left our isle of Artaeum, he was a sharp-elbowed upstart. In the intervening millennia, his power and vanity have grown a thousand-fold. Thankfully, his ambitions remain very narrow. He does not desire wealth or influence in his Great House Telvanni. He has no interest in accumulating followers or expanding his holdings beyond Tel Fyr. He seeks forbidden knowledge, and little else. This of course poses its own dangers. Forbidden knowledge is forbidden for a reason, after all.

We found each other on the Isle of Dranil Kir. I went to the island to investigate an ancient Psijic scrying device. When I entered the ruins, I found Divayth Fyr engaging in some profane Daedric ritual. I interrupted it, of course—not wanting to be devoured by whatever fellcreature he intended to pull from the void. He was far from pleased.

After a bout of cursing, he explained his intentions (in the most patronizing terms possible). Apparently, he intended to open a rift to a pocket dimension using a bizarre Dwarven device. I asked him why. He made a sour face and sighed. “Why do we do anything, my dear Lilatha? To prove that we can, of course."

He went on to ask me about a Daedric artifact he's keen to acquire. Well, not “ask," exactly. Fyr would never ask for help outright. No, he twisted his words to make it clear he was doing me a favor by bringing me into his confidence. I told him I hadn't heard anything, and urged him to conduct his Daedric experiments elsewhere.

In truth, I do know about this artifact, and Divayth is smart enough to know I was lying. I urge you to keep a close eye on him, Ritemaster. Divayth is not nefarious, but his motives remain too murky for my taste. Trifling with Daedric artifacts is a dangerous proposition, even for mages as powerful as Fyr. Perhaps one day he will temper that power with humility. I'm not optimistic.

Yours in magic,

Lilatha

Domihaus the Bloody-Horned

Author: 
Anonymous

Sons. Daughters. Gather your kin. The time has come for our scattered clan to reunite, for soon we shall have a home. Your father followed the hag mother's signs. For thirty days and thirty nights I traced a path of crow-pecked carcasses through the highland crags, seeking the story their picked and broken bones would tell. Under the light of the full moons the Hunt-Father revealed to me his blessed beast.

Twice my height and thrice as broad, this great brute needed no cunning to best any mortal man. His eyes regarded my approach, reflecting their keen edge in the moonlight. His gaze was more curious than wary, and that made for the two of us. The hag mother had crooned of a beast who would impale the twin moons upon its horns, but impressive as this Minotaur was, it seemed a feat beyond a creature of flesh and blood. I began to question whether I had I picked the path true, or read the rooks wrongly.

My doubts were tossed aside as the beast drew himself to his full height and I glimpsed what the hag mother espied in her fevered dreams: the beast's horns aligned with the twin moons at their zenith in the night sky. It was then I knew I'd found the Hunt-Father's favored. Triumphant, I bared my throat to the sign of the speared moons, threw my arms wide, and howled. The cry was caught short as the great beast seized my throat with his massive hand, but I did not flinch. If the Hunt-Father desired my sacrifice that night, I would have been blessed to meet my end at the hands of his chosen beast.

Without effort he tore the talisman I wore from my neck and regarded the ruddy stone carving with recognition.

“Keptu" he uttered. Though the word meant nothing to me, the omen was a good one.

I watched in silence as the beast lowered itself to the cold stone and began a wordless chant that called to the mountain. The stone began to shift, and where once there was only flat rock a basin began to form. He tore his palm on the point his horns and let his blood flow into the shallow bowl, then he bade me do the same. As our blood mingled in the shallow pool, the heat of the wounds grew as pale and dim as the moonlight.

He held out the talisman of our ancestors, dwarfed in his massive fist, and squeezed. With a snort and the muffled crunch of stone he scattered its dust across the pool. The echo of crumbling rock returned to us a hundred fold, but it was not carried on the wind. The mountain's reply rumbled from deep within its belly, stirring like a long hibernating beast woken by the cry of its lost cub. The feeling in my bones was the land, our land, calling us home.

Hear me now, as I echo the call of the land, my wayward sons and daughters! Heed me and follow the Horned Lord's favored son to the den of our ancestors! From this day forward we are the Dreadhorn, and our brothers in hoof and horn are one with our clan. From this day forward we will retake all that has been poached from our lands and hunt the Nords who've spent their years siring a soft brood fattened on undeserved spoils. All their weakness will be trampled under the hooves of Domihaus the Bloody-Horned and our ways will shape these lands once again!

-Snatched from the crows of Gherig Bullblood, Patriarch of the Dreadhorn Clan

Eerika Skjoralmor

Author: 
Torik

Kark,

You asked me once how I came to serve a whelp half my age. You meant it as an insult and I never gave you a reply in words, so I'll tell it to you now. While there's still time.

I'd returned home from the victory over the Akaviri snakes a warrior of some renown. I pledged my sword to the Jarl, became a man of rank and consequence, and as reward my days were spent pacing the garrison walls. When an escort was needed for the Jarl's wife and young child to join him in Solitude for the crowning of High King Svargrim, I leapt at the chance to leave the hold.

The journey looked to be every bit as dull a duty, until we left Rorikstead and the quiet was disturbed by a tremor. Wary, we brought our caravan to a halt and waited for some clearer sign of danger. A fatal mistake. In our hesitation, we'd stopped in the path of a stampeding herd of mammoths. They exploded from the treeline and tore through us without effort, upending our carts and trampling warriors underfoot. I managed to toss the Jarl's young daughter, Eerika, clear of danger as one injured beast toppled onto us in its death throws, but her mother and I were not so fortunate. I came to, half buried under an avalanche of fur, to the enraged bellowing of a giantess as she swatted away the last of our escort from her herd. She locked eyes with me trapped under her butchered animal and I knew the end was upon me.

As her shadow blotted out the light, I made my peace, not seeing that Eerika had climbed atop the mammoth. I tried to call out, but my warning was drowned out by a howl of anger from that tiny child that stunned even the towering figure before her. Whether it was fear or regret that gave the giantess pause, I cannot say, but she backed down in the face of that fearless whelp. Thanks to Eerika I survived that ill-fated encounter, but her mother was not so fortunate. With my legs crushed, I spent the remainder of our journey in the back of a cart, consoling Eerika as best I knew how, but she didn't need my pity. Her tears were hard as ice. In truth, she weathered the loss better than her father. As the Jarl steadily began to take his council from his cups, it fell on Eerika to carry the burden.

At twelve she strode into the dens of bears to fight the famine of an early winter, by sixteen she chased Orc raiders from our hold with a handful of loyal blades, by nineteen she'd slaughtered the rampaging frost troll Raudhungr and earned her title as Thane by deed, not lineage. There's not a soul in Falkreath that doesn't owe Eerika their thanks and their lives. I am no exception. This hold endures because of the steel in that woman's spirit and we'll need every scrap of it in the days to come.

There's thunder rolling over the mountains, but it's not rain that looms in the distance. The horns of the Reach signal the coming flood and again the tremor of misfortune's approach comes too late. This will likely be the last words you hear from me, so take them to heart when I say there's been no greater honor in my life than to serve Eerika Skjoralmor and there will be no more glorious death to ferry me to Sovngarde than any I meet at her side.

Should we speak again, it'll be her you have to thank.

Your brother,

Torik

Housecarl to Thane Eerika Skjoralmor

Naryu Virian

Author: 
Ashur

Grandmaster,

I wanted to talk to you face to face, but your auditor refused to grant me entry to your office. She actually ordered me to put my request in writing! When did the business of murder become so regulated, that's what I want to know! I digress. The reason for this letter—I'd like to work with Naryu Virian now that she's returned to Vvardenfell.

Why, you're probably wondering, would an assassin of my rank, standing, and experience within the Morag Tong want to share a writ or two with a relatively new operative who's been busy gallivanting far from the seat of our power in Vvardenfell? Well, that's just it. Naryu has seen the world, from Deshaan to Eastmarch, Mournhold to the Gold Coast, she's racked up more seals on her travel documents than most of the Morag Tong in recent years. Our status and reputation have improved, as you well know, but we're far from the heights of influence we once commanded. Look at Naryu's perspective and experiences abroad. I want to take advantage of the knowledge she's gained to make me better at my job. Just don't tell her I said that. She thinks that offering compliments is a sign of weakness, and I learned long ago never to show that woman any indication of vulnerability.

I'm not one to tell you what you already know, but the reports I've been privy to concerning Naryu's activities read like the adventures of Investigator Vale! Stopping a plague, saving a king, catching a relentless murderer—all the while completing each and every writ and contract assigned to her. That's impressive! Add to that her sardonic wit, her I-don't-give-a-fetch attitude, and the fact that she makes even Morag Tong leathers look good, and is it any wonder they call her “the Beautiful Darkness?"

Did you know I helped train Naryu, back in the day? It was a toss-up as to whether or not Varon Davel or I were going to get to mentor her through the final stages of her apprenticeship, but I decided to let Varon have all the fun. I suppose I'm regretting that decision now, so I want to make up for it by getting to work with Naryu. To see her in action. I know this might be a lot to ask for, but when was the last time I requested a favor from our esteemed Grandmaster? True, it was a week ago last Morndas, but what about the time before that? I don't make it a habit is what I'm trying to get across here.

What can we expect of Naryu Virian now that she's back in Vvardenfell? From all indications, only the best. She's a warrior without equal, capable of cleaving her way through an army of cultists or nonchalantly slipping a dagger between the ribs of a single target with relative ease. She knows more ways to disable or kill a person than even I do, and that's saying something. Poison, garrote, knife, arrow, sword, polearm, stew pot, bed sheet, hairpin, even a copy of Lord Vivec's Twenty-Fourth Sermon—she can turn even the most inoffensive bauble into a deadly weapon. I can't wait to see how she handles a writ that targets House Redoran or House Hlaalu! I expect it to be an eye-opening experience, to say the least.

Now, I heard that she's decided to take on an apprentice of her own now that she's back in the bosom of the Morag Tong. Don't let that influence your decision regarding my request. I won't interfere with her teaching duties. If I can't kill it, eat it, or bed it, what do I care? Let her play at being a teacher. But when a particularly intriguing writ comes along, one that requires more than a single assassin to complete, I want to work with Naryu to get the job done. Grant me this minor boon and I promise not to ask for another privilege for at least a month. No, make that two! I just want to bask in the action and adventure that seems to spin around Naryu the way Baar Dau hangs above Vivec City. And, if we can stay close to Balmora, so much the better. The Randy Netch Inn serves a scuttle-encrusted fungal eel every Fredas that's just to die for!

With utmost respect,

Ashur of the Quiet Blade

Sun-in-Shadow

Author: 
Therana

Eraven,

I received your talent assessment just hours ago, Mouth. Your list of potential hirelings, while impeccably written, suffers from one glaring omission: the lizard slave, Sun-in-Shadow.

These other mages bore me. According to my spies, Saduro does nothing but tinker away in Magister Otheri's laboratory, like some blight-faced, maladjusted Dwarf. And Teris Saryon? Two-hundred years old and still suckling at her uncle Gothren's teat. Pathetic.

This Sun-in-Shadow, though; she intrigues me. What a novelty! An Argonian who can weave spells as well as she pushes a broom? It's just beyond belief. And self-taught, as well? My contacts inside Tel Naga tell me that she reads Nomu's Tome of Unchained Arcana when no one is looking. The Unchained Arcana! I dare say that you still struggle with Nomu's work, Eraven. Honestly, the fact that she can read at all boggles the mind.

Her talent is raw, undoubtedly. Like most novices, she breaks more things than she mends. Otheri tells me that she nearly burned down Tel Naga, casting spells of conflagration to warm soup in the scullery. She also played a role in that unfortunate nix-ox transmutation a few weeks back. But any true mage can see that these blunders are the result of audacity. Ambition. A Telvanni mage needs both in ample measure. I have no patience for the meek. Cowardly mages are like capless mushrooms—unsightly and worthless.

I doubt we have much to worry about when it comes to mixed loyalties. Rumor has it that she is widely disliked by the other slaves. They call her “Lukiul," “smoke-scale," and “Elf-heart." Reinforce this sentiment whenever possible. She must feel isolated. Isolation breeds contempt, and contempt drives excellence. She needs a heart of cold obsidian if she's to be of any use to us.

Now, there is the issue of her racial handicap. You needn't remind me of her limitations. I've known ten generations of Argonians, and even the brightest were little better than well-trained guars. With time and effort, though, she might ascend to retainer. Perhaps even oathman if she fully commits to the craft. Who knows? I'm anxious to find out how far this lizard is willing to go.

Keep an eye on her. She has the magical aptitude, certainly. Whether she has the stomach for Telvanni politics, well, that remains to be seen.

Magister Therana

Wizard-Lord of the Great House Telvanni

Master of Tel Branora